Kingsbridge Armory at the Council today
December 9th, 2009
UPDATE: According to Councilmember Joel Rivera, the council is worried about 432 potential employees at the Kingsbridge Armory project who would probably not receive living wages. In total, the project is expected to create about 1,000 permanent jobs.
Rivera said the Bronx delegation is considering a proposal to use the funds from the sale of the armory, which he says is $4 million, toward subsidizing these workers’ wages.
This project has already received millions in city subsidies.
UPDATE: A vote on The Related Companies Kingsbridge Armory has been delayed at least until Friday and possibly Monday.
Council members are still negotiating with the developer and the administration over whether to require employers pay living wages at the site, which Related plans to turn into a large shopping mall.
The project must be voted on by Monday. If there is no vote by then, the land use review project would have to start over.
All afternoon members of the Bronx community have rallied on the steps of City Hall, calling for the living wage mandate. Councilmember Oliver Koppell, whose district abuts the project, said the major disagreement continues to be a living wage.
“You get the best you can,” said Koppell. “We’re getting closer on the issue of paying people a living wage.”
But not everyone sees the living wage requirement as a reason to delay the project.
“Every job is not designed to support a family, some are designed for people that are retired or kids after school,” said Councilmember Peter Vallone.
The City Council is set to determine the fate of the Bronx’s Kingsbridge Armory — a mammoth landmark that developer, The Related Companies, wants to turn into a shopping mall.
At the center of the controversial project is a proposal supported by the community and multiple council members to require the developer pay living wages at the site.
Right now, the City Council’s Bronx delegation is holed up in a small room in City Hall debating the deal. Interesting to note, Councilmember Maria Baez, who was voted out in September, hasn’t been spotted. Her predecessor, Fernando Cabrera, was seen entering the negotiation room.
More to come later, and for more on the project go here.By Courtney Gross on December 9, 2009, 1:56 pm
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